Celibacy is a major commitment that I notice more and more people are making. Some do it for spiritual reasons, others to challenge themselves and then there are those who were scared into celibacy. Most likely because they either contracted an STD or thought they did. Another reason I recently heard a 21-year-old say was because she had one child out of wedlock and didn’t want to continue to the pattern. Some would say she could just use protection, but she quickly replied that the only birth control that is 100 percent is celibacy. So what are the pros and cons of this practice? According to healthguidance.org the pros are:

No STIs
Sexually transmitted infections are what essentially killed the ‘free love’ era of the 60s. They are still a very real threat and while it is possible to take measures to avoid STIs, you can never be completely safe from them – there is always a chance of a condom breaking for instance. By being celibate you can however be completely confident to avoid serious STIs (though that said some STIs can be picked up from toilet seats and towels while others can grow about due to natural fauna imbalances – so you’re still not completely safe from the lesser ones).

No Accidental Pregnancies
Likewise by being celibate you can avoid the nightmare of having to tell your friends and family that you became pregnant without intending to. This is again something that you can only truly avoid by being celibate as all known contraceptive methods can sometimes fail. And this time you can’t catch pregnancy from toilet seats…

Being Yourself
One thing that many people don’t consider about celibacy is that it allows you to be yourself – this way you don’t need to worry as much about how you are going to dress, about losing weight, about building muscle or about working out the best chat up lines. Because you’re not trying to impress anyone, and because you’re not out on ‘the pull’ this then means that you can relax and sink into yourself. Celibacy takes off the pressure and allows you to refocus on what’s important.

Less Distraction
At the same time if you are celibate then you have a lot less distraction. This is particularly true for those with high sex drives who might otherwise find themselves unable to concentrate on what they are doing because there’s an attractive woman across the room from them. You might think that being celibacy would make you more sexually charged as a result of the ‘starvation’. However quite the opposite is actually true, and if you are having regular sex this actually has the adverse effect – causing your body to produce more sex hormones and resulting in your being far more sexually charged than if you didn’t have sex at all. The more you have sex, the more you’ll want it, and the more you’ll find yourself looking at porn or fantasizing about women/men in the office.

At the same relationships are a distraction and often relationships and sex go hand in hand. This then means that you are able to focus more time on other things by not being in relationships. For instance many people will use celibacy as part of their religious practice and often here the idea is that they abstain from sex in order to learn more about their religion and to feel closer to their God.

Or if you are in a relationship, then celibacy can be a great way to distract less from the other things that matter such as whether you get on well as friends and whether you know each other. This way you can spend more time sharing experiences and talking and less time having sex.

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  • ms_micia

    While I’m an advocate of abstinence and celibacy I think that this article is a little short sighted on the reasoning. Although it touched on the religious reasons it really didn’t delve into the why’s to my personal satisfaction. To become closer to God and really understand who YOU are, this is a very serious decision. Also celebicy is not a reason not to take care of yourself or let yourself go. I intend to take very good care of myself man or not. I’m choosing to wait for marriage. It’s not an experment or a phase I’m going through it’s a continued dedication to myself and my faith. My body belongs to God and until a man that has dedicated himself to God also decides to make me his wife I will not be sharing it with anyone.

    • Also relationships and sex do NOT go hand in hand. I know plenty of people in relationships who don’t have sex.

    • ms.random

      @ ms_micia, I think that this article only confirms for people dedicated to Christ why we should abstain. From other people’s perspective, it has its perks because of the trouble you avoid. You and I know as Christians this only part of the reason: it’s a more encompassing one for us as we go through life.

  • ms.random

    Rick James said it best on the Dave Chapelle Show years ago, but I’ll edit: “Sex is one hell of a drug.” I think it’s one of our most powerful biological tools, and even virgins like me are aware of its power.

    I am a Christian (not just one that says it all the time, but a real seeker of Jesus), and a virgin in my early 30s, and while people marvel at that, it is a sacrifice made to honor God. I think a whole lot that was mentioned in this article was on point and insightful, but the reason to honor God (religious reason) encompasses all the other reasons mentioned. These are all a part of treating the body as a tool for God and in integrity to living life as He’s called us to.

    I DISAGREE that as part of celibacy one is less inclined to want to impress or flirt or socialize. I think it depends on a person’s preference, personality, and inclination as to how far one goes. Trust me, celibates/virgins don’t necessarily forego shaving legs and underarms…

    Relationships. I really want to be in one, but it will have to be with a man that is of the same mind and dedication as myself: focused on Christ first. Without Him as our beacon of hope, the temptation is that much harder. The problem is in finding that in people who are dating potential. The number and opportunities are very slim. But I can’t let up on my integrity and dedication to Christ.

    My best friend and her now husband, who I’ve spent a whole lot of time with over the last 12-16 years, were dating for 6 years before they married. Of course, I wasn’t with them in all aspects, but I think it’s unfair to assume that they couldn’t hold out that long. They had a lot of people and accountability, like minded people in their sphere. It is possible. They’ve been married almost 5 years now. You spend a whole lot of a dating relationship, learning a person and seeing if you can love that person for even longer. Sex can intensify it, but distract it.

    Everyone has their reasons for being celibate. I can’t force my reason on anyone else, but the waiting can be difficult, but the rewards of waiting are worth it.

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